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Additional resources for Governing Cotton: Globalization and Poverty in Africa
Foreign exchange earnings from agriculture underperformed. While structural changes were evident and an uptick in economy-wide input-output linkages occurred, chronic hard currency shortfalls made Tanzania’s already highly geared industrialization even more tenuous. In Manfred Bienefeld’s view, even small declines in agricultural export earnings required the realization of substantial offsetting efﬁciencies in the industrial sector. Given the low level of human capital these enhancements were difﬁcult to achieve.
Historic Relationships Between Cotton and Poverty 29 Over this period Tanzanian cotton producers whose earnings placed them in the bottom two income quintiles fared relatively poorly. The most specialized amongst their number reaped only meagre gains – if any at all – from a small shift in the share of national income from the top quintile to the bottom 40 per cent that occurred between 1967 and 1972 (Green 1974: 268; Sandbrook 1982: 5). From the 1966–67 cottonmarketing season through 1972–73, cotton production volumes stagnated and trended downward and the proportion of lint export prices direct producers were paid declined signiﬁcantly (Bienefeld 1982: 308).
Amongst other outcomes, these ﬂaws reduced the funds available to pay or provide services to the people who actually grew cotton. Boards and parastatals also encountered problems achieving the timely delivery of chemical pesticides, a productive input that was then considered to be essential for the achievement of higher cotton yields. After transportation costs rose in 1973 prospective pesticide buyers in cottonproducing countries that did not export oil often experienced considerable difﬁculties securing enough hard currency to purchase adequate volumes from abroad at the outset of each planting season.